Posts by Ross Mason

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  • Speaker: The purpose of science and its limits, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    My problem with that is that over 20 years none of the magic has worked. So my thinking is how about we stop doing things that don’t work and simply do the thing that has worked in every other country.

    (Being the atheist I am, forgive me, I will have to slip for a moment...)

    Amen to that!!!

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Access: I Can’t See You, But You Should…,

    I'm blind to a shitload of disability issues even though I have been involved with Paralympics.
    I hope, no, I want, these posts to open my eyes a whole lot more.

    It's been a great start!

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Feed: Grandpa's Kitchen, in reply to Howard Edwards,

    3. Throw away the kea and eat the stone.

    God damn it. My history book says it was a Pukeko!!!

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: The purpose of science and its limits,

    Thanks Chris Waugh for pointing out the article. I had no inkling BTW.

    If you believe Joyce, it's not an arm-wrestle over how many engineers and ag scientists we need versus philosophers and poets, but a struggle for international competitiveness - both for our universities and economy.

    Steven Joyce's latest his "levering" of STEM is like the latest song on one of his radio stations play lists. It is watching it rise, letting it shine and then get it chucked out when the next "hot item" turns up.

    Phil O'Reilly is turning into a windsock. It was (only) a few years ago that he was on the panel that decided that an ATI should be established based around IRL. Funny how he sees himself now in the court of those who see money chucked businesses way and universities should be closely connected to industry.

    Example of airy fairy allocation of resources: According to the Gazetted criteria for "Research and Development Growth Grants" the following is stated:

    While eligibility requires that applicants submit an R&D plan, the merits of the R&D programme described in the plan will not influence eligibility.

    R&D into better magnetic underlays would qualify ??

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: The purpose of science and its limits,

    And it doesn’t help to not have teachers with the skills to sift woo from evidence based medicine or leave what skills they do have at the school gate on the way to the classroom.

    “Teachers trial flu jab alternatives"

    It saddens me after 43 years involved in science, technology and research to see good people wasted. It astounds me that we can throw corporate memory and years of skill acquisition to the wolves of competitive funding. It pisses me off watching govt after govt perpetuating the myth that every research project will – by definition – be ending in a raging commercial success with millionaires on every corner. Even worse, I am deeply concerned that scientists are forced to project such outcomes in their bids to have any chance of even having their bid considered. It staggers me that we have to try and demonstrate the “purpose of science and it’s limits” to 50+ year old adults.

    It frightens me that yet again, another generation of kids will emerge from their education cycle without knowing what is the “Purpose of science and it’s limits”.

    I’m tired of it. I really really am.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: How I Became a Grumpy Old…,


    "You didn't consider mowing your meadow? Cows up here would appreciate such green fodder.”

    He didn’t have a dog. He was one man so he couldn’t “mow his meadow”. PS – Did you send the kids out to look for the Lion?


    “I propose that I use the proceeds of Public Address's recent crowdfunding to acquire an adjacent property and install a family in which another highly-credentialed householder -- a physicist, say -- pursues a similarly endless, admirable restoration mission, writing occasional blog posts about his fitful progress.”

    Hahahahahahaha…bonk…..Physicist…….30 years ago I thought if a person without School Cert could build a house……well…so could I. The toilet got renovated a couple of years ago. New bathroom has got a second going over. The kitchen is next. Then the Dux plumbing gave out and all the walls in one end of house that Ross built had to be built again. I too have a Tanner!!!! :-) :-) And a skilly. And a BIG drill. And a lathe. And..and..and…but the house is not finished……my wifey is a very good wifey…..


    “You’re also in danger of becoming an expert in something you really don’t want to do.”

    Check out the “Expert” video…

    David: Buddy! I have a couple of real old curly coathangers that would fit perfectly in your house. I've decided they wouldn't suit my house. Is black OK??

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Republished: The CTV collapse…,

    Funny you should say that about what they can or do. My impression over recent decades was that they get called out to accidents, heart attacks "because they are there". That is, they seem to be more fire stations with volunteers who hang around waiting for some action. Did they then decide if we got involved with things-other-than-fires then we can do more. ( eg. My Mum had a turn and we ended up having the local fire brigade and paramedics tune up before the ambulance arrived. My wife had an asthma attack and the same thing happened).

    This now seems to have become "the norm". I can understand how this was taken up because there is basically no cost when volunteers are involved.

    Is it coming home to roost because they are expected to be the jack of all trades?

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Republished: The CTV collapse…,

    The irony of the whole NZFS and the aftermath of the CTV and where it all happened......

    The NZFS rose out of NZs biggest shop fire. 18 November 1947. Ballantynes. Christchurch.

    From the Royal Commission the NZ "The inquiry’s recommendations brought about the Fire Services Act 1949 which was the first attempt to standardise the Fire Service organisation, its administration, and financing. The Act established the Fire Service Council which represented the Government, insurance companies, local authorities, the United Fire Brigades’ Association, and the firefighters."

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Things worth knowing,

    This seems to be the only post where someone has mentioned MH370.

    The search is moving north. Bits and pieces have been found.

    Flotsam. But no Jetsam.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Republished: The CTV collapse…, in reply to Andre,

    The Fire Service is a political and hierarchical organisation but the biggest failure seems to have been the inability of the 13 similarly-ranked officers at CTV to pick a leader.

    That is the staggering bit isn't it. If my understanding about the Fire Service is right, then as any situation develops and as each next highest brass arrives they get to be the one to say "Go". Having 13 (!!!) arrive at once would put the shits up all 13. Each was probably scared shitless to say "Go" to the other 12. Sad. but Superman was on the other side of the world that day.

    But lets go back to square one. A building fell down when by all rights it shouldn't have. Once six or seven floors collapse on one another all bets are off to carefully dissect it within 48 hours and rescue everyone who is alive.

    Those poor bloody firemen never had a show. Just like the dead. 30 years ago no one would have known about those people alive in the midst of such a hell hole. Cell phones weren't invented. Can anyone in their wildest dreams have imagined being able to call their family - in China - from under such rubble? That is mind blowing in any world order.

    It is sad but with such instant communication we now expect heaven and earth to move at the drop of a hat.

    Nature doesn't work like that. Sorry.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1479 posts Report Reply

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